Review: Wandrd Prvke Photographers Backpack
I’ve long been on the search for the “perfect” backpack to carry my photography gear. My passion is documentary photography where I get to be a fly on the wall, capturing moments as they happen. But to capture spontaneous moments means my camera needs to be with me everywhere I go.
My camera goes with me up mountains, on rivers, to cities, into forests, to birthday parties, and to festivals. Of course it also needs to be within immediate reach at home. But I have been struggling to find a backpack that looks nice and functions well in all of those situations. I was convinced that what I wanted didn’t exist until I stumbled upon the PRVKE from Wandrd.
There were three points that had me convinced to try the PRVKE backpack from Wandrd. First, it’s modern sleek design would look just as good when exploring a city as it would on top of a mountain. I was also impressed with all of the organisational features promised by the online video. Finally, the genius of a zippered side access panel to my camera sealed the deal. After much deliberation on what size to order, I decided upon the 21L with the photography bundle and i happily received my backpack in March 2018.
I’ve put it through its paces, taking it as carry on for long haul flights, on photoshoots, on camping trips as well as using it for a hiking trip to the Alps. And after 10 months of use I've assembled a list of the pros and cons of owning this backpack.
Easy Access to Camera: What makes this backpack really shine over all the other options I considered is the side access panel. Just by sliding the backpack off I am easily able to access my camera through the zippered side access panel. Thanks to this feature I can get at my camera quickly but just as importantly, I can pop it away when I’m not using it without having to put the bag down on the ground.
Great for flying: I love the compact size and how it can slide under the seat in front of me in the airplane which keeps me out of the fight for overhead space. When it's under my seat, it acts as a little rest for my feet as well. It's also pretty great to be able to have two hands free when walking around the airport
Good weight distribution: Camera and lenses are heavy enough but when you add a laptop to that it can be pretty difficult , so I was happy to find that with the laptop compartment flush against my back, I was able to carry all of my gear comfortably. The weight seems to be better distributed than my previous backpack, even when I have it packed to the brim.
Outside pocket convent for documents: The long outside pocket is a great place to store a notebook and pen, or travel documents for easy access.
Passport pocket genius: I love the added passport pocket, that sits securely against my back. The pocket is easily accessed by me for passport control, but is hard for anyone else to access as it sits against your back. The pocket has additional security with the zip being able to pushed down into a snug pocket. I also use it to store cash and any tickets we might need to access quickly.
Outside pocket for water: No photographer wants to have a water bottle mixed in with their equipment, so I love that there is a good sized pocket that fits my water bottle on the outside of the bag.
Durable, wipe down material: the bag is made out of a wipe down material on the front that after 10 months of regular use is still looking good. I am also not worried about a little bit of rain either as it is weather resistant too.
The roll up section that is used to store non-photography supplies is sometimes hard to keep organised and it can feel like an bottomless pit, but I can see using some small packing cubes could help this problem.
I wish the clasp up the top was a little more secure, I would be worried to store valuables at the top of the rolled down section. If I do put my wallet up there, I make sure that it sits at the bottom.
These bags are currently not sold in Switzerland so I had to pay 70 CHF import duty on top of postage
My only regret is that I didn’t get the bigger size. I went back and forth in my mind between the 21 and 31L and finally decided on the 21L thinking the 31L would be too big for everyday use. But now I regret not having it! The 21L is great for day trips, but it's just a little bit too small for a weekend away including clothes and camera gear.
All in All?
I know my search has been successful when I stop researching, and I haven’t looked for a new backpack all year. The PRVKE is a practical, good looking backpack for photographers and I am so glad I clicked that "buy" button back at the beginning of the year. I may consider getting the larger 31L size down the line for weekend trips, or even try out their Hexad Access Duffel for longer trips, but for now I am more than happy with my choice.
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